Let's see if I have this straight...
Day 1 - patient admitted to NICU - 99295
Day 2 - patient to surgery and then post surgery to PICU, and after a period of time back to NICU - 99296 by whichever doctor gets their dictation done first. ... LOL
Seriously, this does happen with some frequency in a busy children's hospital.
We use the rule of thumb that the service that has the child for the most time bills the global Neonatal Critical Care code. This requires coordination and cooperation between the neonatologist and the pediatric intensivist, as well as their coders (if it's not the same person).
I'd code 99296 on day 2 and use as the provider whichever physician had the most critical care time with the patient. These are really sick babies, I know, but the "rules" of the code only allow it to be used once per day.
F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CPC-E/M
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